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Disorder and Interactions in Topological Floquet Systems

Project description

Shedding new light on the behaviours of exotic materials

Building on concepts developed in the 1970s and 1980s, the theoretical description of topological phases of matter won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2016. These exotic quantum states can now be engineered and possess interesting robust properties. An in-depth understanding of their behaviour is still needed, in particular in the presence of disorder and interactions. The EU-funded DInTopF project focuses on Floquet systems (periodically-driven systems where topological quantum states of matter can arise) to reach this goal. The project will study the effect of disorder and interactions on topological Floquet-engineered systems implemented with ultracold atoms to shed more light on the properties of topological materials.


This project aims at studying the topological properties of ultracold atoms in a periodically-driven honeycomb optical lattice in the presence of disorder and interactions. It relies on an already-existing experimental setup that can routinely create topological Floquet phases with weakly-interacting bosonic potassium atoms. The development of several technical tools will allow for the investigation of yet-unexplored topological phases of matter and bring solutions to the inherent heating due to the periodic driving.
A first task is the direct observation of topological edge states and the realization of a Chern number 2 topological phase. This requires the implementation of a box potential and a better control of the laser beams providing the optical lattice. It will provide for the first time a complete picture of the bulk-edge correspondence and of the phase diagram of Floquet systems.
A second set of experiments involves the setting of a disorder potential, and will bring into light the interplay between topology and disorder in periodically-driven systems. In particular the existence of disorder-induced topological phases such as the anomalous Floquet Anderson insulator will be demonstrated. In this phase, the bulk is fully localized and topologically-protected edge states do exist.
In the last part of the project, a vertical confinement will be implemented, and it will be combined with the tuning of interactions with a Feshbach resonance to bring the system to a strongly-interacting regime. There, interesting phases of matter can be explored, such as a fermionization of the gas loaded in a so-called moat band. More strikingly, a topological many-body-localized Floquet phase can be realized, where the strongly-interacting particles undergo a periodic driving, but are resilient to heating while supporting a topological edge state.


Net EU contribution
€ 162 806,40
80539 Muenchen

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Bayern Oberbayern München, Kreisfreie Stadt
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
€ 162 806,40